Holiday gas prices won't keep motorists home

May 22, 1997


Staff Writer

Motorists might complain that gasoline prices are high, but it doesn't seem to have much bearing on whether they will travel by car this Memorial Day weekend.

"We'd go where we're going regardless of the gas prices," said Nancy Belknap of Washington, D.C.

Belknap, who had pulled into the Sunoco station on Dual Highway, said she has a house on a river in Virginia and it will take three hours to get there, but it's worth the traveling.

Charles Gibney of Coffman Avenue in Hagerstown, said he'll participate in parades across the area this weekend as a member of the Sayara Motor Club.


"I gotta go where I gotta go," Gibney said. "It (gas prices) could be a lot lower."

Gibney said the club will be driving miniature Model T Fords in Sharpsburg on Saturday and at Union Bridge, Md., on Monday. The club participates every Memorial Day, he said.

Mid-Atlantic AAA released figures showing that gasoline prices in Maryland are about 12.9 cents less per gallon for regular than last Memorial Day. They said the state's average for May 1997 is $1.20.9 for regular self-serve gas. In Hagerstown, the price is 3 cents cheaper at $1.17.9.

In West Virginia, the average May 1997 gasoline price is $1.27.6. Prices for regular self-serve in Martinsburg, W.Va., ranged from $1.17.9 to $1.28.9. And in Pennsylvania, the average is $1.22.9 for regular, self-serve gasoline, with prices ranging from $1.19.9 to $1.45.9.

John Dyer, originally from Hancock, said if he had a reason to go somewhere, he would go despite the price of gas. He said he's lived in places all around the United States and that gasoline prices were cheaper in Texas and California than in Maryland.

One Hagerstown resident said gasoline prices don't stop him from traveling on Memorial Day, other travelers on the road is the reason.

"I don't travel on the holidays. I try not to," said John DeCola. However, he said, "If I was going to go someplace I would go no matter what."

AAA projects that an estimated 30.8 million people are expected to travel 100 miles or more from home this holiday - up 2 percent from last year's high of 30.3 million travelers.

The Herald-Mail Articles